The Horrific Sufferings of the Mind-Reading Monster Hercule Barefoot
Hercule is born in 1813 in one of the brothels in Königsberg (renamed to Kaliningrad in 1946) in Russia. He is deformed, a dwarf and deaf, but has the gift of reading other people’s minds. His life becomes a huge adventure as he moves around through Europe to support himself.
The book is also a love story, because the same night as he is born, a girl, Henriette Vogel, is also born and through fate they are linked together for the rest of Hercule’s life.
The book is an interpretation of the classic 18th century French fairytale “The Beauty and the Beast”.
“The Horrific Sufferings of the Mind-Reading Monster Hercules Barefoot” won the Swedish August Prize in 2002.
Carl-Johan Vallgren (born 1964 in Linköping) grew up in the small Swedish town of Falkenberg. Vallgren has published several novels and collections of short stories. His breakthrough came with his seventh book "The Horrific Sufferings of the Mind-Reading Monster Hercules Barefoot", which was awarded the August Prize in 2002.